Immigration policy today has been largely driven by the border with Mexico. Nativism and xenophobia are both the causes and the results of attempts to seal off that border from movement that has been naturally occurring for longer than anyone knows. When we hear American politicians and white citizens complain about the dangers of immigrants and of illegal immigration, they are not talking about the airports or overstayed student visas or even the border with Canada. They mean the border with Mexico and they mean people of color. That very specific type of xenophobia is not new and has definite origins, all rooted in Texas. In matters regarding U.S. immigration policy, all roads lead to El Paso, Texas.
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